Wednesday, 29 October 2008

It's been a few days

I keep thinking I should be blogging but something always seems to get in the way. So, a quick post before Emily and I leave for Cambridge in the morning. We've never been to Cambridge before (and it's not far from here - a couple of hours I'm told) but our neighbours moved there a month ago and invited us to come visit and we're taking them up on it. I've borrowed a SatNav from Kay (thanks Kay!!) and I've also printed out directions so, hopefully, we won't get lost along the way. It's been really chilly here so leaving around 9am sounds good to me. Give any frost/ice on the roads a chance to disappear and there's no big rush. I've no doubt I will take some photos ;o) and that they may even appear on this blog within a few days. We're only away for one night - back in time for halloween - so I'm sure I'll blog again over the weekend. Until then xx Update: Another pound lost this week brings the total to 18.5 pounds released (with pleasure!)

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Jon's birthday

Today was Jon's birthday. It was also the day the clocks went back so he got to have a bit of a lie in. When he came downstairs we did the usual present opening. Nothing too exciting this year - more things that he needed rather than wanted. Some new clothes and new shoes
Emily got him The Incredible Hulk DVD - can that be called light relief??
We arranged to go to Wetherspoons for lunch and invited family members to come and join us. I think we had a table of about 21 in the end. The food was good and it was nice to get a chance to see some of the family we don't see as often. (Sorry the photos are so grainy, I bumped the ISO up to 1600 because of the light but unfortunately you can see it. Anyone with tips for shooting dark indoor shots, please let me know!)
Will, Theresa and Tyler were there but Tyler wasn't so keen on having his photo taken today. We think he may be teething!
Looking down the table
The birthday boy! Happy Birthday Jon xxx
Kyle and Emma recently moved into a house together so we'll be going for afternoon tea next week ;o) Also thought you would like to see your eldest son, Norma!
Jon's sister Debbie and her husband, Dave
A rare photo of myself. Anyone who knows me knows I hate having my photo taken but on rare occasions I do give the camera to someone else.
I did get to do some scrapbooking before we went out for lunch but I haven't put the photos on the pages yet or got everyone to write their little bit on their pages. This is also from the DYL class and we're making a mini album to go in the main album. I've done the basic layouts but just need to finish them off. Hoping I might get that done tomorrow.
Hope you've all had a good weekend and are ready to face the new week. Emily's on half term now so I'm looking forward to not having to get up at 6am.

Saturday, 25 October 2008

25th October

It's that time of month again - the 25th - scrap your day! So, lots of random photos about what we've done today. Nothing terribly exciting, just everyday stuff. Not wonderful professional photos - some are a bit blurred (because I wasn't wearing my glasses to focus!!) but they're today!
First up, my morning routine. I always get up and have a shower, do my make up and then come downstairs and dry my hair before I do anything else. Excuse the scarey expression!! Emily is usually up around the same time as me - or even earlier! Here she had just come downstairs after getting dressed and was looking for a programme on TV.
Next up I tend to check my emails and see if anyone's actually looked at my blog ;o) In this photo Claire was actually showing me how to do a print screen and get the sample colours on Cathy's class notes to use on layouts. Thank goodness I have people who know more about computers than I do and who can teach me what I need to know!
Emails and web pages checked and it's time for breakfast. Still trying to stick to weight watchers (though not very successfully today - the start was good and then it went downhill!). Special K with some tinned fruit cocktail and soya milk.
A little bit later; time for a cup of Rooibos (redbush) tea. Love it! Because it was colder today I've probably had about 5 cups through the day. Love pretty mugs too!
The view from our back doorstep. The acer at the bottom of the garden is turning a beautiful red at the top. I love acers and enjoy seeing the different seasons from the doorstep. Love our little garden, it's south facing, quite private and there's just something about it that makes me happy! It was one of the selling points when buying this house as far as I was concerned, I could picture myself sitting on the top step with a cup of tea and I was right - it's something I've done numerous times since we moved in here 10 months ago.
Tom eating - again! I'm sure anytime anyone walks into the kitchen, Tom comes running for food. He doesn't always get it but we have to give him 10/10 for trying (and being annoying!)
Another shot of my computer - this time Jon was working out how I download fonts on to it. I haven't got the hang of Vista yet and things that I used to be able to do without a problem aren't always that easy any more. I think I can do this one now! Thank you darling!!
Claire decided today was washing day. It's not really the weather for hanging out clothes at the moment, and I'm trying not to use the tumble drier all the time, so she's hanging some shirts up to dry. I love the fact that she now does her own laundry - thank you Claire!! xxx
Lunch time and I'd promised Emily I'd take her to Starburger. This is no fancy restaurant but the food is good and the chips are some of the best in town. My favourite lunch there, at the moment, is the spicy chicken wrap. Very Yummy!! Emily tends to have chicken nuggets and chips.
After lunch we had a little bit of birthday shopping to do before making our way back up to Wickendens Sweet Shop (above). All those jars in the window on the left are full of sweets. We love this shop, it's a real sweet shop with shelves full of jars of sweets. Anyone coming to East Grinstead seems to go in to buy sweets of some sort. We go every Saturday to get sweets to have while watching tv. The guy that owns the shop always asks Emily how much they're going to cost and she now works it out before going up to the counter - great for her mental maths! If she's got it right, he'll often throw in an extra rainbow strip for her.
I had to add this photo of Cafe Nero's - we didn't actually go in today but because I seem to be forever saying I've been there for coffee, I thought I would add a photo regardless.
Later this afternoon, this is what my scrapbooking table looked like. I was working on the Real Life Colour layout for class this week and, as normal, my desk ended up a total tip! I haven't got round to clearing it yet but will have to tomorrow morning before I start doing anything else.
A shot of the tv in the kitchen which had Strictly Come Dancing on in the background while I finished off some work on the computer.
Last, but not least, the layout I did today. The colours aren't necessarily ones I would normally put together but that's part of the challenge. This week it was a mustard colour, darker and lighter greens, brown and red. I managed to use them all but I'm not sure if I'm happy with the finished result yet. Still feel it may need another something under the circle with the heart but don't know what yet. Any suggestions or shall I leave it as is?
Thanks for stopping by to have a look. Enjoy the rest of the weekend

Friday, 24 October 2008

Where does the time to?

It's Friday night and the week just seems to have flown by. Emily broke up for half term this afternoon, so we're looking forward to not having to get up early next week. Towards the end of the week, the girls and I are going up to Cambridge for a night. Our next door neighbours moved there at the end of September and invited us to go and visit them. As we've never been to Cambridge before, we're taking them up on the invite and are hoping to do some sightseeing as well as visiting Alan, Zaira and William. I'm looking forward to seeing somewhere new and hope to get some photos - also really hoping the weather holds out for us! Before that, however, I know Emily has some homework that needs to be handed in after half term, so she'll need to make a start on that. We may get to fit in a movie or some bowling as well. This morning I met up with my friend Helena for a coffee at Nero's. The time always seems to whizz past when you're having a good chat. We both agreed that we need to do more exercise so, after half term, watch this space! I need it to help with Weight Watchers and to generally become a bit fitter. As I said, watch this space!! This afternoon I did the first sketch for Week 4 - DYL. I couldn't decide what photos to used and finally settled for some of Leah, my friend's daughter, from a few years ago. You can let me know what you think!

It's Jon's birthday on Sunday so a few bits to do tomorrow! Hope you all have a good weekend


Wednesday, 22 October 2008


I'm having a much quieter week this week. Had planned on doing my ironing this morning but, somehow, that didn't happen. Instead I made a layout, using some older photos of Emily, before popping down to Mum and Dad's for coffee. Iain arrived with Pumpkin Pie (which was very tasty) so I'm not really expecting to lose any weight tonight :o( We had a good time chatting and before I knew it it was after 12 o'clock.
Back home, I continued looking through some of the older photos and decided to do another layout about a day in Brighton. It's now 3.20pm and the day is disappearing fast! Here are the layouts
I've probably spent more time than I should have scrapbooking so time to go and do some other things. xx

Monday, 20 October 2008

Brave Girls!

Claire had had an appointment through to go and have her MMR booster this afternoon. When she had her first MMR jab they only did it once but they've now decided that those people need to have a booster shot. Emily has never had the MMR (I wouldn't let her have it, with all the controversy around the time she was due to have it). Anyway, Emily came with me and I chatted to the nurse about her getting vacinated now because she had decided she wanted to get it done. What we didn't expect was for the nurse to say "Ok, let's do it today!". Yup, both girls had MMR vacines today! They were very brave but said it was quite painful and their arms were sore afterwards. However, by the time Emily went up to bed she said it wasn't so sore anymore and she didn't want any paracetamol - so that's good!
Anyone who knows me, knows I don't do sympathy very well. I'm one of those Mum's who laughs when the children fall over (unless it's serious!). My children all know if they want sympathy, they go to Dad. So, what was the first thing we did when we got back from the Doctors .... take photos!! I know that's probably not what the girls wanted (hence the hamming for the camera ;oP ) but here is one for the blog (photo isn't brilliant as I had to use flash inside!)
Emily has to go back for her booster shot in January and, in the meantime, I'm hoping they don't get any side effects. xx

Week 3 Sketch 3 RWC

After Emily left for school this morning I had to get stuck in and do this final layout for the Design Your Life week. The colours we were given this week were Red, Lime Green, White and Grey. Last night I had printed out the photos I thought I could use for it and I am really happy with the way it turned out. I've always liked these photos of Hugh on his 16th birthday and now I've finally got to use them.I was slightly late picking Mum up to go shopping but I'm so glad I got it finished. The green isn't showing up properly in this photo but you can get the idea. Journalling reads: You asked for a BMX for your 16th birthday and got to choose which one you wanted. You enjoyed showing it to Max and Faith when they came down from London for your birthday. It wasn’t long before you wanted to show them what your bike could do and had them all coming down the driveway at the front of the house. The others made do with skateboards but you were out front on your BMX. Good times! Photos 06/2004 /Journaling 10/2008 xx

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Week 3 Sketch 2

Claire has gone to her boyfriend's sister's wedding today and, needless to say, I had to take a couple of photos before she left. She was quite nervous before leaving because this is the first time she has gone to a wedding without us and she doesn't really know anyone else, other than Graham's family. I know once she is there she will be fine. It made me realise, however, that this is what it's going to be like over the next few years. Hugh and Claire will be going to their friends weddings! How scary is that!! I've use one of the photos for the second sketch for Design Your Life this week. Now I can relax for the rest of the evening - we have Strictly Come Dancing and The X Factor to watch on TV.


Friday, 17 October 2008

DYL Week 3 Sketch 1

Just a quick post to put up the latest layout for the Design Your Life class. The class notes came through yesterday and to begin with I didn't know what photos I was going to use. However, I was sitting in the car while Emily was in her guitar lesson, re-reading the notes and looking at the sketches, when I knew Claire's 18th birthday photos would be the ones to use. Fortunately I had some paper and a pen with me so I jotted down my idea for the journalling and I could see it coming together in my head. I printed the photos off last night and this morning after doing a quick tidy up I got started with the layout. I'm going out in a few minutes to meet a friend for coffee and am so glad I finished before I left, otherwise I know I'd have been sitting there with what I had left to do running through my head ;o)

(I had to leave a bit of the floor showing on this photo because I didn't get over it properly to give me a straight image to crop - the page is straight in real life, promise!)

Jounalling reads: Being one of the younger ones in your school year group meant that you weren't always able to go out with your friends. So, when you turned 18, we had a family meal at The Emperor and when we got home, it was your time to go out. You couldn't wait to be asked for your ID at the pubs an clubs because you were now legally an adult! Allowed to drink, go clubbing and vote!


Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Not much going on

I spent the day at home yesterday and most of the morning cleaning and tidying the kitchen. Hugh was sitting his driving test and I couldn't believe how nervous I was. I had to keep myself busy the whole time he was away and kept looking at the time waiting for him to phone. No one could have prepared me for how I would feel! Unfortunately, he failed for making one mistake. Needless to say he wasn't a happy chap yesterday but we've rebooked the test for the end of November (first appointment we could get) and in the meantime he'll continue practicing. This morning was spent in town trying to find a shrug and shoes for Claire to wear to her boyfriend's sister's wedding on Saturday. We were finished much sooner than I thought we would be and managed to get everything she needed. This afternoon I made a quick layout using some photos I took of Tyler at Theresa's birthday tea at the end of August. I really like the photos and am glad that I've finally got to use them. The colours aren't showing up so well on the blog. The background is red and there is red, blue, yellow and green in the striped pp.


Monday, 13 October 2008

Autumn colours

Growing up in Natal, South Africa, we didn't see much evidence of the different seasons. I didn't actually own a coat until we moved to the UK. Even in the middle of winter (where we lived), it used to be chilly in the morning and we'd have a jersey/sweatshirt on but most days, by lunch time, we would be in tshirts or tops. It would start cooling down again around 3 - 4pm and the jersey/sweatshirt would go back on again. Evenings could be quite chilly as we didn't have central heating (didn't really need it) and at most we would put on a little bar heater. So, moving to the UK was a big change! We arrived in April 1991 with a 2,5 year old and a one year old. I had no clue how to dress them for the colder weather and it's possible that the children were cold that first year until I got the hang of what clothes to put on them ;o) My sister, Norma and her family came to the UK in 1992 (I think that's right) and she lived about 40 minutes drive from us. I can remember driving out to see her in Autumn and the colour of the trees in the country lanes is something I remember most. I know Norma also loved this time of year and watching the trees change colour. So, this post is for Norma. I went for a walk this afternoon with my friend, MyungSan with the sole intention of taking autumn photos. The trees are starting to turn but are also losing their leaves quite quickly so I wanted to get some shots before it was too late. I think this is possibly my favourite season. Sitting in our lounge, I have watched this tree opposite the entrance to our road change colour. Note the church steeple in the background. Turning left out of our road and walking up towards Forest Way These photos are from our neighbourhood, all within easy walking distance. I hope you enjoy them.
All for tonight xx

DYL Week 2 Sketch 1

I started working on this layout yesterday. It began as a white background with black behind the photos and the patterned paper the reverse of the one shown here (ie. black flowers with white background) but it didn't stand out. So, I swopped it around and ended up with this layout and I like it!!
A little detail shot.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Baking and Scrapbooking

This morning I decided to do some baking. We had some bananas which were too ripe for any of us to eat and I either had to use them or put them in the compost bin. Having thought about it, I realised I had the bananas, carrots and walnuts so I could make a carrot cake. I remembered the cute halloween cupcake cases I'd bought this week and decided to try something different and make carrot cake cupcakes instead. They turned out really well! Once they'd cooled I just needed to ice them. Instead of doing my usual spreading it over the top, I thought I'd try out the piping bag and nozzles that I bought years ago (literally) and haven't used. The icing was probably a little bit softer than I would have liked but here's what they turned out like. Cute, don't you think! Alan and Zaira, our neighbours who have moved to Cambridge, had come down to cut the grass next door and popped in for a coffee and got a cupcake too. Alan's decided this is how he should eat carrots in future ;o). Also popped a couple round to Mum and Dad so they could have them with their afternoon tea/coffee (hope you liked them). Later this afternoon I started on some scrapbooking. I had been going to do the first sketch from week 2 but then the Real World Colour sketch for this week came through and I ended up doing it instead. This week we had to use the colours brown, pink and orange. Here's my take on it. I'm really enjoying Cathy's class and look forward to each weeks downloads.
Right hand page
Left hand page
Looking forward to seeing what everyone else has done with this sketch. Perhaps I'll get the sketch I'd intended to do today done tomorrow!